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Kung Fu Tea

Martial Arts History, Wing Chun and Chinese Martial Studies.

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Meir Shahar

The Book Club: The Shaolin Monastery by Meir Shahar, Chapters 5-Conclusion: Unarmed Combat in the Ming and Qing dynasties.

  Introduction This is the third and final installment of our in-depth review of Meir Shahar’s groundbreaking work, the Shaolin Temple.  Today we will be looking at the evolution of unarmed boxing in late Ming and Qing era China.  I... Continue Reading →

The Book Club: The Shaolin Monastery by Meir Shahar, Chapters 3-4: Monastic Violence in the Ming Dynasty.

Introduction Welcome back to the second installment of the Book Club.  In this series of posts we will be taking a more detailed look at some of the most important works in the field of Chinese martial studies.  Our first... Continue Reading →

The Book Club: The Shaolin Monastery by Meir Shahar: Introduction and Chapters 1-2.

***Ah the book club!  I had almost forgotten about these posts.  They were a common feature of Kung Fu Tea's early days as I tried to give several of the "classics" a very close reading.  Maybe it is something that... Continue Reading →

From the Archives: A Really Short Reading List on Chinese Martial Studies

Introduction Ok, here is a fun post that I originally wrote in 2012 that really needs to be updated.  So many new articles and books have come out in the last eight years (including ones written by myself) that I... Continue Reading →

Martial Arts Studies at Tel Aviv University

  I recently had the opportunity to visit Israel for the first time.  It was quite an experience and I would like to share a few details about that trip with the readers of Kung Fu Tea. The occasion was... Continue Reading →

Shaolin Kung Fu and the Paradox of Intangible Cultural Heritage

      Su Xiaoyan. 2016. “Reconstruction of Tradition: Modernity, Tourism and Shaolin Martial Arts in the Shaolin Scenic Area, China.” The International Journal of the History of Sport. Vol. 33 No. 9, 934-950.     Introduction   Both state... Continue Reading →

Bodhidharma: Historical Fiction, Hyper-Real Religion and Shaolin Kung Fu

    ***For the Friday post we will be revisiting a classic (and very popular) article from the archives.  I originally posted this essay almost two years ago and recently I have found myself thinking about it again.  It will... Continue Reading →

Invulnerability in the Chinese Martial Arts: Meir Shahar on the Origins of the “Iron-Cloth Shirt” and “Golden-Bell Armor”

    Meir Shahar. “Diamond Body: The Origins of Invulnerability in the Chinese Martial Arts” in Perfect Bodies: Sports Medicine and Immortality, Edited by Vivienne Lo. London: British Museum, 2012. Introduction: The Significance of Invulnerability in the Chinese Martial Arts... Continue Reading →

Five Moments that Transformed Kung Fu

    Introduction   I was recently having a conversation with T. W. Smith who runs the Kung Fu Podcast. He was developing an idea for a show and asked me what five specific moments did the most to transform... Continue Reading →

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